SO432 GIS Spring 2017
Course Project (1/9/2017)
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Each student will prepare a final project .
This has the following objectives:
Demonstrate mastery of the concepts and
skills learned in the course.
Apply those concepts and skills to an
area or problem of personal interest.
Show initiative and resourcefulness in
acquiring and integrating data.
Examples of past projects. The quality varies wildly,
so insure that you look at several. Each of the topics had the potential
to be a good project.
The project should generally be in the United States, only
because so much free data is available. If approved by the instructor, a student might do a
project elsewhere in the world, but you must be sure that you can find data. Data from the
US federal government uses standard formats
and is easy to use. Data from state and local governments varies in
quantity, quality, and data format, and may not be readily usable. If you
want to use such data, you should see the instructor to determine the
feasibility of what you want to do, and plan for extra time to get your data in an
acceptable format. You should start
this project early. You will be dealing with computers, and complex data.
The instructor is committed to helping you as much as necessary, but it is
rather hard to solve the problems of every student in the course the night before an assignment is due.
- Collect and merge at least three different data sets, and
use them to solve a problem. You must have at least
one raster data set, one imagery data set, and one vector data set, and
create at least two different base maps that show good principles of map
- Create a data base on your own. The data set you create can contain images that you can
bring up with a click of the mouse, or link to web sites. It will
be easier to create a point data base, but creating a line or area data base
can also be done if you start early and work carefully. You can add to
an existing GIS database, but you must clearly point to enhancements that
you have made.
- Create graphs, maps, 3D views, tables and other graphical
products as appropriate. You should aim for at least a
half dozen good graphics. You must show results from your data
base displayed on the different base maps. This should have your
graphics, and text equivalent to at least three pages double spaced in Word.
- If you want to include screen grabs in your paper to show
how your proposal works, you can use the Print Screen key
which will copy the screen to the clipboard. From there
you can paste directly into Word, Paint, or any other
program to edit or use the image. This is most
appropriate if you are proposing the development of a GIS
data base to solve a problem. You can also save any map or view in
the GIS with the File, Save Image command which will capture just the map or
view and not the entire screen.
- Final product that "sells" or
"explains" something to someone using GIS. This should have your
graphics, and text equivalent to at least three pages double spaced in Word
- Provide written appendices as Word Documents if this is not
included in the final product:
- Metadata--the source of all your data, any
processing you had to do, and why. Put this in a table.
- The structure of your database, and why you picked the fields and coding
you did. Put this in a table.
- An explanation of the audience to whom you are writing the paper, and
any notes to the instructor that explain what you did and why.
- Analyze the region around your home.
- Analyze a region where you go hiking or hunting.
- Analyze a coastal region for its suitability for
- Map the distribution of earthquakes in Nevada.
- Analyze hurricane storm tracks for the past century.
- Create a data base on marinas in Annapolis, and analyze
the best location to store your new boat.
- Present a proposal to Historic Annapolis to make a GIS database showing
pictures and the location of all historic houses in the city.
- Pick a site for a ski area near your house.
- Topic sentence. If you are
having trouble, email or see the instructor before this date. This
will explain the problem you intend to solve.
- Proposed structure for your database, with an explanation for the
fields you have selected and their formats. This will count as 10% of
the project grade.
- Data sets downloaded from the internet,. Submit a table
listing the data set, your source on the web, and anything you will have to
do modify or reproject the data so you can use it. This table will
become the metadata portion of your final report. This will count as
10% of the project grade.
- Final project due. You will provide the KMZ file to the instructor.
- Project demonstration during last lab period.
file for MICRODEM has detailed directions on which formats to
download, and how to prepare the data for use. The computer
is very fussy, and you must pay attention to details .During project crunch time MICRODEM
and the help file are updated almost daily to deal with
issues that are coming up with various students getting data; if you are
having problems, or suggestions about what would make your like
easier, let me know--but don't wait until the last minute.
- You must insure the data you get is registered, and in a
usable format. The biggest problems you might have
will be data in State Plane Coordinate System, and some
of that can be converted using GDAL.
- There is an incredible amount of data available on
various states. See Prof Guth, and google away, to
find something of interest. Remember that you must
get data with registered coordinates. Lists of
state GIS data portals are listed in the MICRODEM help file.
- Some of the data sets will be very large. Your
computer can multitask, and download two files at a time,
and perform other operations at the same time.
- The best format for vector databases, including the TIGER
files, is ESRI shapefiles.
This analysis used the following data:
|NED--the National Elevation Dataset
||downloaded as a Geotiff
||Used 1" because of the large size of the project area.
|TIGER data for Black County
||Downloaded as shapefile
||Used for streams and political boundaries.
|DOQQs for Black County
||Downloaded as MrSid compressed image files, and
converted to JPEGs with the IrfanView program
|Roads for Black County
||Downloaded as e00 files, and converted to ArcView formats with the Import71 utility from ESRI, and
converted to Shape files with ArcView 3.01.
Finally, they were converted from State Plane coordinates
to latitude/longitude with MICRODEM.
||Much better detail than the Tiger roads.
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